Author: Tracy

Guest Review: A Duke in Shining Armor by Loretta Chase

Posted December 13, 2017 by Tracy in Reviews | 2 Comments

Guest Review: A Duke in Shining Armor by Loretta ChaseReviewer: Tracy
A Duke in Shining Armor by Loretta Chase
Series: Difficult Dukes #1
Also in this series: A Duke in Shining Armor (Difficult Dukes, #1)
Published by Avon
Publication Date: November 28th 2017
Genres: Historical Romance
Pages: 400
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five-stars

Not all dukes are created equal. Most are upstanding members of Society. And then there’s the trio known as Their Dis-Graces.

Hugh Philemon Ancaster, seventh Duke of Ripley, will never win prizes for virtue. But even he draws the line at running off with his best friend’s bride. All he’s trying to do is recapture the slightly inebriated Lady Olympia Hightower and return her to her intended bridegroom.

For reasons that elude her, bookish, bespectacled Olympia is supposed to marry a gorgeous rake of a duke. The ton is flabbergasted. Her family’s ecstatic. And Olympia? She’s climbing out of a window, bent on a getaway. But tall, dark, and exasperating Ripley is hot on her trail, determined to bring her back to his friend. For once, the world-famous hellion is trying to do the honorable thing.

So why does Olympia have to make it so deliciously difficult for him . . . ?

Olympia is a girl who should be quite happy to be marrying a duke.  She knows that she needs to do this because her parents have no idea how to handle money and she wants to make sure that her 5 brothers are cared for.  Unfortunately, on her wedding day, the more she thinks about marrying the Duke of  Ashmont the more she realizes she just can’t do.  Olympia, the bookish girl who nobody thinks will step out of line, does a runner.

The Duke of Ripley, on of the Duke of Ashmont’s best friends, sees Olympia run for it and follows.  He tries to get her to return to her wedding but the farther away they get the more Ripley realizes that he doesn’t want her to return.  He wants her for himself but he knows he can’t betray his best friend like that.  He and Ashmont have been best friends for years and Ripley’s loyal to him.  So how come he can’t get Olympia out of his head.

Loretta Chase does it again!  She’s written a fun, entertaining, humorous romance with a premise I never expected.  The charm that Chase stuffed into ADiSA was amazing.  I was smiling or laughing throughout most of the story and I loved it.

Both Ripley and Olympia were great characters and I loved them together.  I loved that Olympia wasn’t afraid to speak her mind about Their Dis-graces (Ripley, Ashmont and their friend the Duke of Blackwood) and her disdain for them.  Of course the more that Olympia got to know Ripley she realized that there wasn’t just fluff in his head.  She truly didn’t want to hurt Ashmont but she felt he was immature enough to get over it quickly. Lol  Of course Chase wrote some incredible secondary characters as well with Blackwood, Ashmont, and Ripley’s aunt Julia.

The overall story is one that I loved and highly recommend.  If you like fun, irreverent historical romances then this is one you should definitely read.

Rating: 5 out of 5

five-stars


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Guest Review: Chaos and Control by Season Vining

Posted December 12, 2017 by Tracy in Reviews | 2 Comments

Guest Review: Chaos and Control by Season ViningReviewer: Tracy
Chaos and Control by Season Vining
Published by Entangled Publishing. LLC (Embrace)
Publication Date: December 11th 2017
Genres: Contemporary Romance
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four-stars

When Wren Hart returns to her sleepy little Midwest town after years on the road, she finds the last thing she’d ever expect—a reason to stay. And that reason has a hard body, a knowledge of vinyl, and a crooked smile that sends her reeling.

Preston is a gorgeous, mysterious man, whose life is ruled by routine and order. Yet somehow, he finds Wren and her wild ways captivating. While their relationship grows in a delicate dance of chaos and control, the danger Wren thought she'd left behind during her travels is inching ever closer…and just may destroy them both.

Running from an abusive boyfriend, Wren heads back to her hometown in Kansas.  When she returns she fins her much older sister still running her record store, but she also finds Preston, a gorgeous man who seems to have a few control issues.

Wren has been traveling for the past 3 years and hasn’t kept in touch all that much with her sister, Bennie.  Bennie was the one who raised her when her parents didn’t want much to do with Wren, their very late addition to their family.  Bennie has always been there for Wren and she is once again when Wren needs her.

Wren can’t seem to keep away from Preston, even though she knows she might not be the best one for him.  She doesn’t plan on staying in town and Preston’s OCD forces him to be on a rigid schedule at all times.  Despite their differences Wren and Preston start to make things work.  Unfortunately, life throws Wren some serious curve balls and she finds that her life changes whether she wants it to or not.

This was a sweet story that I really enjoyed reading.

Wren was definitely a free spirit but I thought that she was perfect for Preston – even with all of his OCD issues.  I loved that Vining wrote her hero with OCD and did such a great job at portraying this disorder.  I know from experience that it can be very stressful on friends and family of those with OCD but in Wren’s case she found it endearing and actually pretty hot.  Go Wren. 🙂  Preston was a great hero and I enjoyed him so much.  I loved that he found Wren a calming effect rather than seeing her a too chaotic.

Bennie, Wren’s sister, played a large role in the story and I liked her a lot as well. I don’t even really want to call her a secondary character because she was so central to the story.  She was a great person and loved her sister to pieces.

Overall I really liked this story and liked Vining’s writing. I definitely recommend this great contemporary romance.

Rating: 4 out of 5

four-stars


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Guest Review: Company Ink by Kat Coburn

Posted December 8, 2017 by Tracy in Reviews | 1 Comment

Guest Review: Company Ink by Kat CoburnReviewer: Tracy
Company Ink by Kat Coburn
Published by Self-Published
Publication Date: December 7th 2017
Genres: Contemporary Romance
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three-half-stars

I think this might be someone else’s story… because it certainly doesn’t feel like mine anymore.

I can still remember a time when I was happy, when I didn’t go to sleep each night with a stress headache, and wake up each morning and cry because I no longer recognized my own life. A sick parent, a job I can’t stand, a company I hate, and too many people counting on me to stick it out and be strong. This can’t be my story.

I guess I’m an unlikely heroine anyway- sarcastic and feisty, and more than one person has called me foulmouthed. Yeah, I guess it’s pretty unlikely that there is a hero and a white horse in my future.

Enter Dan Kelly. The new smoking hot vice president at this horrible company. He’s offered me a way out, one more shot at my dreams and the life I always wanted. He stands too close to my desk with his cocky smirk and makes it hard to type, he pushes our workplace flirting until it’s all I can do not to beg him to bend me over his desk, he challenges me, makes me want to argue with him until our fights verge on something… more.

He makes me feel alive like no other. He makes me feel like there just might be a happily ever after in my future.

The problem is…. his mountain of secrets.
The problem is… we can’t cross that line or I’ll be fired.
The problem is… he’s my best friend and now I want more.
The problem is… I’m about to be sucked into a story I never imagined I’d be a part of, and I’m not sure if I can make there be a happy ending.

Dani Wallace is a computer geek who had a traitorous ex.  That ex ended up selling their company and in order to stay with the program she made she started working for a corporation.  She hates almost every minute of it but she has to pay her mother’s medical bills.  The job has turned her into someone she doesn’t know or even like and when she meets Dan Kelly she’s not thrilled with him.  She thinks he’s just another corporate jackass.  Fortunately when they start working together they realize that they have a lot in common and soon become friends – best friends.

Dan wants nothing more than to be with Dani forever but at first she thinks he’s married.  When he nips that thought in the bud he realizes all of the lies he’s telling are going to get in the way of his future happiness.  How can he tell Dani who he really is and save their relationship when he can’t make a move on her in the first place?

This was a decent story.  I did feel some pull toward the H/h throughout the story but the way that the book was written parts of it seemed almost clinical.  Definitely more telling than showing and that grew old after a while.

I did really like Dani and Dan and together they were great.  Some of their times together were fun and I enjoyed reading about those.  Unfortunately it took until almost the end of the book before the pair could actually be together and I found that frustrating.  I guess I had really mixed feelings about this one. 🙂

It looks like this is Coburn’s first published book and it was a decent start.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

three-half-stars


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Guest Review: Once Upon a Christmas Eve by Elizabeth Hoyt

Posted December 4, 2017 by Tracy in Reviews | 2 Comments

Guest Review: Once Upon a Christmas Eve by Elizabeth HoytReviewer: Tracy
Once Upon a Christmas Eve (Maiden Lane #12.6) by Elizabeth Hoyt
Series: Maiden Lane #12.6
Also in this series: Wicked Intentions, Wicked Intentions, Lord of Darkness, Darling Beast, Dearest Rogue, Sweetest Scoundrel, Duke of Sin, Once Upon a Moonlit Night (Maiden Lane #10.5), Duke of Pleasure, Duke of Desire, Once Upon a Maiden Lane
Published by Forever, Grand Central Publishing
Publication Date: December 5th 2017
Genres: Historical Romance
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three-half-stars

Adam Rutledge, Viscount d'Arque, really rather loathes Christmas. The banal cheerfulness. The asinine party games. And, worst of all, the obligatory trip to the countryside. His grandmother, however, loves the holiday—and Adam loves his grandmother, so he'll brave the fiercest snowstorm to please her. But when their carriage wheel snaps, they're forced to seek shelter at the home of the most maddening, infuriating, and utterly beguiling woman he's ever met.

Sarah St. John really rather loathes rakes. The self-satisfied smirks. The sly predatory gazes. Oh, and the constant witty banter rife with double meaning. But in the spirit of the season, she'll welcome this admittedly handsome viscount into her home. But as the snowstorm rages, the Yule log crackles, and the tension rises, Sarah and Adam find themselves locked in a fiery, passionate kiss. If love is the true meaning of Christmas, it's the one gift this mismatched pair can't wait to unwrap.

Adam Rutledge and his aged grandmother are traveling to an aunts house for Christmas when their carriage breaks down.  Adam heads to the first house they see and it ends up being the home of Godric St. John’s (Lord of Darkness – ML #5) mother and the family is all there for the holidays along with some friends.  They welcome Adam and his entourage and when they find out his grandmother is quite sick they welcome them for Christmas as well.

Sarah St. John has no desire to interact with Viscount d’Arque or any man who is considered a rake.  However, the more she sees and talks to Adam the more she sees that though he has a reputation he’s actually a good man underneath it all.  He’s soon melting the ice around her heart and a Christmas romance blooms.

This was a cute little novella.  I wish that it had been a full-length story, however, because I felt that I needed to know both Sarah and Adam much more in order to feel all the melty tingles that I should have been feeling.  Yes, the romance was good and of course Hoyt always writes a great story, but I wanted more in-depth info on the H/h!  As much as I liked Sarah and Adam together things were rushed at the end and that bothered me.  I also didn’t really get why Adam had to hate Christmas but I went with it. lol

Overall a quick, fun read and one I’d recommend.  I mean, it’s Elizabeth Hoyt so of course I recommend it! 🙂

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

three-half-stars


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Guest Review: Wilde in Love by Eloisa James

Posted December 1, 2017 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Wilde in Love by Eloisa JamesReviewer: Tracy
Wilde in Love by Eloisa James
Series: The Wildes of Lindow Castle #1
Published by Avon
Publication Date: October 31st 2017
Genres: Historical Romance
Pages: 416
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four-stars

Lord Alaric Wilde, son of the Duke of Lindow, is the most celebrated man in England, revered for his dangerous adventures and rakish good looks. Arriving home from years abroad, he has no idea of his own celebrity until his boat is met by mobs of screaming ladies. Alaric escapes to his father’s castle, but just as he grasps that he’s not only famous but notorious, he encounters the very private, very witty, Miss Willa Ffynche.

Willa presents the façade of a serene young lady to the world. Her love of books and bawdy jokes is purely for the delight of her intimate friends. She wants nothing to do with a man whose private life is splashed over every newspaper.

Alaric has never met a woman he wanted for his own . . . until he meets Willa. He’s never lost a battle.

But a spirited woman like Willa isn’t going to make it easy. . . .

Alaric is shocked when he finds out he’s a celebrity.  He’s returned to England from his many adventures around the globe and finds himself famous.  He has written books that have become best sellers, but he had no idea that a play was the main cause.  The play portrays him as an incredible romantic – something he is definitely not.

Alaric arrives at his family home just in time for a house party in celebration of his brother’s betrothal.  Alaric meets Willa and sees her as someone different.  She doesn’t fawn all over him and states that she’s never read his books.  He’s intrigued, and he makes it a point to spend more time with her.

Willa and her friend are not what they appear to be.  They tell bawdy jokes and have a wicked sense of humor but on the outside they are the perfect ladies.  Willa has turned down no less than 14 marriage proposals this season alone as she has no wish to marry until she finds the perfect man for her.  When someone from Alaric’s past arrives at the party he uses Willa as his fake fiancé.  The thing that surprises the couple is that both of them would like it to be a true engagement.

This was a great book.  It started off with such charm and humor I was instantly invested in the story.  Alaric proved to be a wonderful hero.  He was such a normal guy who did extraordinary things and had written books about his adventures.  Some thought they were fiction, but he had truly lived through it all.  He fell hard and fast for Willa and I loved it.  He was a good man and I liked his character immensely.

Willa was an intelligent woman who wanted nothing to do with adventure. Her parents had died while they were being reckless and Willa just wanted a normal life – husband, children, no adventure.  I liked that she wanted nothing to do with Alaric at first as she thought him a sham.  I loved reading about the two of them falling in love as she was so wrong about Alaric.

This was a fantastic start to a new series and I can’t wait to see what happens next with Alaric’s brother, North.

Rating: 4 out of 5

four-stars


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